Plan maps future for Murrysville
Murrysville is home to an aging population along with younger families who can't afford to buy the empty-nesters' larger lots, according to an architect who is developing the municipality's comprehensive plan.
The plan provides a glimpse into Murrysville's future, including some trends that are beginning to emerge, Andrew Schwartz, of Pittsburgh-based Environmental Planning and Design, told officials this week.
“You need to start thinking about that (55- to 65-year-old demographic) now,” Schwartz said. “Are there some places that maybe there should be higher densities encouraged?”
The U.S. Census shows:
•◘ In 2000, the number of residents ages 55-65 was 1,656.
•◘ By 2010, the number in that age group had grown to 2,206.
•◘ In 2012, 89 percent of homes were owner-occupied, and the median price was $208,000.
•◘ The median household income was $87,107 in 2012; the number of people per household was 2.49.
•◘ The population grew .07 percent in a decade, reaching 20,219 in 2012.
Schwartz listed smaller lot sizes as an option that could increase population density. More residents may want to downsize in the future, he said.
One objective of the plan is to “encourage retention of long-term residents and attract a new generation of long-term residents.”
Schwartz presented a final draft of the 71-page comprehensive plan to council this week. The 10-year plan is meant to outline the 37-square-mile municipality's intentions and goals. It lists goals of maintaining quality, managing growth, improving transportation, celebrating community and fiscal responsibility.
“(It aims to) maintain and enhance the community's commitments to quality education, open space, fiscal management, responsible development and business opportunity,” he said.
The plan takes a different look at “build-out” than the current 10-year-old plan.
“In terms of the land capacity, what areas really could develop?” Schwartz said. “The amount of development and the pace of development was significantly different than it is today.”
The plan recommends compiling data about the municipality's older neighborhoods, considering opportunities in south Murrysville and encouraging more community outreach, such as listing community organizations on www.murrysville.com.
Mayor Bob Brooks asked Schwartz to focus on industrial parks, perhaps near Route 366 and Route 286. Some companies that showed interest have located elsewhere because Murrysville couldn't accommodate them, Brooks said.
Council will review the plan, sharing copies with the public and officials in Westmoreland County, adjoining communities and Franklin Regional School District. After that, council will hold a public hearing about the document, then finalize it and consider approving it.
A group including representatives from council and Franklin Regional School District made up the comprehensive plan study committee.
Council President Joan Kearns, a member of the committee, called the plan “clear and concise” and a “good summation” of the group's ideas.
In other business, council approved an $8 million budget with no property tax increase. The tax rate will remain at 12.15 mills for 2014.
Rossilynne Skena Culgan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-836-6646 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Over the falls — Cucumber Falls that is — go 3 kayakers in Ohiopyle
- Greensburg man charged with gun, drug violations
- Scottdale man charged with raping child in 1990s
- Westmoreland County recorder of deeds seeking 2nd term
- Derry Area adds instructor for agriculture, horticulture
- Hempfield man charged with giving gun to teen girl
- Ligonier-based group sponsors rafting adventures to help ease veterans’ anxiety
- Westmoreland County Drug Overdose Task Force gets $9K to buy heroin antidote
- Southmoreland could get state subsidy boost
- 11 Ligonier Township residents rescued by boat from floodwaters
- Spirit Airlines puts Chicago on its flight path